Dan Wootton clashed with Republicans Overseas board member Drew Liquerman on gun laws, challenging him on his assertion that he’d feel safer in London if he owned a gun.
Wootton spoke to US citizen Liquerman, who lives in the UK, the day after a shooting in Jacksonville, Florida, in which two people were killed and several more injured when a 24-year-old David Katz opened fire.
Katz then turned the gun on himself.
'London is more dangerous than every US city'
Conservative Liquerman left Wootton speechless as he claimed London was more dangerous than “just about every major US city”.
“How do you think our society works when it comes to guns?” asked Wootton.
“Don’t you feel safer here? Don’t you think it’s more sensible to not be at a movie theatre thinking someone might barge in and shoot you?”
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“London is more dangerous than just about every major US city, and so are other UK cities,” claimed Liquerman.
“You have no evidence for that, Drew,” responded Wootton.
“More people are killed and raped in London,” Liquerman said.
“Did you not see the report that came out that London, it was the first time in recorded history it was more dangerous than New York City? A 13 and a 15 year old were gunned down in London, so no I don’t need to be lectured on that.”
UK and US murder rates
In April, the Sunday Times reported that London’s murder rate was higher than New York’s - but this was only during February and March.
Last year, there were 116 murders in London, compared to 290 in New York, 282 in Los Angeles, and 650 in Chicago.
“The issue in London, Drew, is knives,” Wootton shot back.
“But we’re not seeing in this country the type of mass shootings, like in Las Vegas when 58 people were gunned down by one man from a hotel window, Drew?”
“Yes that is terrible, but I don’t need to be lectured on do I feel safer here when your capital city is more dangerous than just about every city in the US,” Liquerman argued.
‘You want people at Notting Hill Carnival to be armed?’
He then shocked Wootton by saying that if he lived in Notting Hill while the Carnival was happening, he’d feel safer with a gun.
“I was at Notting Hill where this carnival happened and 20 people were arrested on knife charges - actually, I’d probably feel a bit safer if I lived in that area and had a shotgun in my house,” he said.
- More than 370 arrests and 30 police officers injured at Notting Hill Carnival over the Bank Holiday weekend
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Momentarily lost for words, Wootton replied: “So you’d like the million people walking around Notting Hill Carnival to be armed?”
Over 370 arrests were made at the Carnival on Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday.